What do you get when you combine Mercedes-Benz cars, art and music? One hell of a show! The launch of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz B-Class and DJ Set took place at the Sound Academy last Wednesday night. The show featured DJ Sets by British House music trio Dirty Vegas and Montreal-based ElectroFunk duo Chromeo. If you wanted to “B Scene,” this was the place to be as the media and socialites walked around observing live graffiti street art, and attendees had a chance to have their photos taken with models. There were big screens throughout the venue which featured live feeds of Tweets that hash tagged relevant terms about the event. I had the pleasure of seeing my Tweets on the screens several times. What seemed to be a main attraction was the candy bar – a table full of unlimited free candy suitable for any sweet tooth. I actually felt like a kid in a candy store.
After a half hour of mixing and mingling, the lights went down around 8:30pm, and the party got started. It was a full house when Dirty Vegas opened the show. The bottom and top floors of the venue were packed. Around 8:45pm, the show opened with Allein by Eric Prydz. The crowd was rather calm at first, I heard more people talking than cheering but after a few minutes, people started to get into the vibe of the show by throwing their hands in the air and gearing up for what was to come next. Crowd-pleasing tunes of the night included Shut up & Dance (PleasureKraft Remix), Lana Del Rey’s Blue Jeans (Kris Menace Remix) and Gotye’s Somebody That I Used to Know. Of course any fan of Dirty Vegas would go crazy when hearing the track Days Go By, so it wasn’t a surprise when the song dropped, everyone, including myself cheered and sang along to the lyrics. Throughout the set, the light show on stage was mesmerizing as lasers of fluorescent colours danced to the music and crowd was bouncing along with glow sticks in air. You could definitely feel the high energy as people started to dance to the music while wearing oversized glow stick glasses and bracelets thrown by representatives on stage into the crowd. I was surprised when audience members started throwing the glow sticks back on stage. Luckily, the Dirty Vegas trio laughed and actually challenged the crowd to throw sticks at them directly as they attempted to catch them all – they were being great sports.
When the headliner Chromeo came on stage at around 10:00pm, you could really feel the difference in the energy of the crowd. There was a lot more excitement as people jumped on others’ shoulders while dancing to the music. The crowd got louder when Audio Jacker’s Pull Ya G String Down South, Alex Metric’s Anybody Else, Chromeo’s Bonafied Lovin and Rogersseventytwo’s Take Me Higher were played. Some more crowd favourites were “Heads Will Roll” by yeah yeah yeah yeahs (A-Track Remix) which is actually one of my favourites, and Martin Solveig’s The Night Out, a track that would probably be the night’s anthem in my opinion. We also enjoyed Bingo Player’s Just a Little, Chromeo’s When the Night Falls, Florence & the Machine’s You’ve Got the Love (Mark Knight Remix). The crowd got really hyped up to Kurd Maverick’s Hell Yeah and the energy continued into Duck Sauce’s Big Bad Wolf. Some classics were covered in the set including a mix to Eurythmics Sweet Dreams, a mix that stood out to me as I am a huge 80s music fan.
Chromeo themselves seemed to be very interactive with the crowd. They were dancing while doing their DJ set and they talked to the crowd and cheered about being in Toronto throughout their set. The night ended with them playing some mainstream hip hop tracks by Drake, at which point the crowd became mellow. I found it was a nice change of pace for those who do enjoy hip hop. I was one of few who were left jamming until the very end of the show which ended around 12:30am.
Overall, the crowd was left entertained from beginning to end by both Dirty Vegas and Chromeo. Though it didn’t seem to be a typical EDM crowd, everyone was having a good time. It helped that Mercedes-Benz upped the class factor with two B-Class cars on stage beside the DJ booth. There were also videos and graphics on stage of the car in action and the Mercedes-Benz symbol would flash on the screen throughout the show. Lastly, there was an elegant red carpet on which you could walk and take photos against a ‘B-Scene’ backdrop – all wonderful additions to such a concert. It was a night that combined art, class, and of course, amazing electronic dance music. Well done Mercedes-Benz!
Sheena Osman – EDM TOR